Missing Persons of Balochistan and Our Responsibilities – Feroz Rahim Baluch

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Balochistan has been dragged in a vicious circle. The circle of missing persons. The decades old missing persons issue which was fomented by Pakistani institutions and establishment, has not left a single family unaffected in Balochistan. Sadly, the chain of missing persons looks interminable. Every day, the young, old, kids, men and women are found on the roads holding the pictures of their loved ones; the missing ones! However, in every protest we can observe the pictures are new, and multiple in numbers. It seems like that every Baloch will be in a frame one day, till this vicious circle is circulating Balochistan.

I sometimes see myself in a picture in a frame, my mother holding it, and sisters crying helplessly, and hopelessly.  The reasons behind finding ourselves in the frame is that, we all have something in common as the missing have, it is our identity; Baloch. Secondly, we all love books, these two reasons are enough to get abducted in Baluchistan. It, however, is traumatising, getting abducted and languishing in dark dungeons for years is really traumatising, it actually is an un-ending pain. As late Sajid Hussain, “ Dead don’t haunt me as much as the missing do”.

Notably, the bourgeoning missing persons haunts us, the resistance and protest however continue in different parts of Balochistan. The state does not only abduct a person, rather it wants to subjugate our identity and dignity which we as a nation have been feeling proud of. As Fanon says, “When we revolt its not for a particular culture, we revolt because for many reasons, we can no longer breath”. Yes, we can no longer breathe, we really can not breathe, the tears of Zakir Majeed’s mother, the despair eyes of Rashid Hussain’s mother filled with tears, really suffocate us. The pain by virulence of missing persons is not cure-able.  Similarly, the issue of missing persons in Balochistan is dawdled time and again by the Pharaohs of the time.

Similarly, two days later a protest was held in Karachi for the safe recovery of Shahmir and Murtaza family members of Banuk Sabhia. The protesters alleged that to pressurise Banuk Sabhia her family was being threatened, and on the base of her political activism, her brother Shahmir along with cousin Murtaza has been abducted. Collective punishment has been the tactic of the state institutions from the beginning days. Mostly the political activists are pressurised by forcibly abduction of their loved ones.

 World is already a silent spectator on the issue of Baloch missing persons, but Rashid Hussain’s handover has made it conspicuous that the international organization and countries are not only silent spectators but have an equal hand in this oppression. Recently, a social media campaign was held in Twitter for the safe recovery of Rashid Hussain by his family. Rashid Hussain was a Baloch activist who was forcibly abducted in UAE, then handed over to Pakistan in 2018, since then his whereabouts are unknown.

This was the story of Shahmir and Rashid Hussain, but this scary story doesn’t end here, because there are more than 30,000 such stories, the stories of permanent pain and angst. Here the women don’t know whether, they are widowed or married, here the sons wait for abducted fathers, while fathers wait for the sons. This is the land of missing persons, the land of mutilated bodies, this is our beautiful revolutionary Balochistan.

Living in such a land, we the educated youths are not fulfilling our duties. We have a peculiar approach on Baloch missing persons issues. We dawdle hours and hours on social media, but dare to raise voice for the thousands of Baloch missing persons. We the energetic youths shouldn’t have a soft attitude toward this outrageous hegemony which has ruled out our social and political lives, and must not have a parochial attitude toward it. There must be strong resistance against them, the families of missing persons should not be left alone with this interminable pain. They mustn’t be left alone on the roads with the pictures of their loved ones.

At the time of oppression silence is not an option at all. It is duty of every Baloch to overtly support the missing persons families. An entire educated and politicised generation is in state dungeons, it is our duty to raise voice for them every where, and at any time and situation.

Feroz Rahim Baluch is a student of sociology at University of Balochistan and teaches at DELTA academy Quetta, He can be reached on Twitter by @ferozrahimbaluc

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of The Balochistan Post or any of its editors.

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